ANAHEIM (CBSLA.com) — A 15-year-old boy from Long Island died of a mysterious illness while on a school trip to Disneyland.
Joseph Tutaj was one of 80 students from Seaford High School’s marching band who traveled to the Southland to perform at the Anaheim theme park last week.
“The first day at Disneyland he was okay. He went on Space Mountain and everything with us. Then the second day he wasn’t feeling well at all,” said band member, Michael Nicola.
On Tuesday, Tutaj was at the Santa Monica Pier when he complained of a high fever.
The teen was taken to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and died 24 hours later.
Doctors told the boy’s family they believe Tutaj may have contracted a debilitating infection.
Tutaj’s parents said the 15-year-old trumpet player had no history of medical problems.
The LA County Coroner’s Office said the cause of death has been deferred pending further tests.
The boy’s passing is the latest in a string of tragedies to hit the Tutaj family.
His father, Robert, is currently battling stage four cancer, and the family’s home was destroyed in Superstorm Sandy.